Bavaria Yachts a Love Story
The Adventures Of a Bavaria 37 Sailing Boat, from her owners!
This year so far we have sailed about 3,000 miles on our Bavaria Sailing Yachts and great fun it has been. Here is one of them Bavaria 37 for sale This figure came as a bit of a shock when we added it up but we have been sailing a lot!
We fell in love with our Bavaria 37, when we first saw her last November in Portland Marina. She was in lovely condition and had barely been used. After completing the purchase we kept her in Portland over the winter doing a variety of jobs such as antifouling, changing the sail drive seal, having a heating system installed, which kept us nice and toasty through the early season, replacing/extending the spray hood, having a smart new pedestal cover and installing a few new nav aids such as Navtex, a backup GPS and AIS etc.
We set off to bring her back to Dover one fine spring morning and had a fairly uneventful trip apart from dense fog as we tried to leave Gosport for an early start across the Solent. However, the heating kept the crew happy and spirits high.
Once safely back in Dover Port we set about planning our summer sailing. We had an early cruise to France, to Boulogne, Calais and then Dunkerque before enjoying a brief trip to local Ramsgate and back. The weather was really kind to us and we had some really good sailing, cresting nearly 8 knots on a broad reach. When the wind faded the engine turned in a very creditable 6.5 knots.
Early June saw us crewing for a friend from Ipswich to Falmouth followed by a few days on dry land before flying out to Greece to our shared Bavaria 36.. We had a fantastic three weeks sailing from Kos to the southern Cyclades, the highlight being Santorini, and back via the Northern Dodecanese to Kos. Again we had good winds save a blow in Santorini.
We had a few brief days at home before our major trip of the year to the Baltic. We left mid July and had wonderful weather on our trip up to the Elbe, even seeking shade at times! We went via Dunkerque, Blankenberge, Scheveningen and Den Helder (watch out for vicious tides there) and then on up the coast to Terschelling. We were told to go to lovely Vlieland but it was full so beware - we had to make the big long detour to Terschelling and back before we crossed to the German Friesian islands of Borkum and Norderney ,both very busy in July, we were 4 out in the latter. From Norderney we decided to go to Helgoland as this made the tides better for entering the Elbe to Cuxhaven during daylight. A lovely quiet spot and popular with Germans shopping for duty free booze and perfumes.
We had friends join us in Cuxhaven before we made our assault on the Kiel Canal. We overnighted at Giesenau before making our way out and up to Strande on the Baltic. Now no tides and not much sea! We had a very good three weeks pottering around the southern islands of Denmark (recommend Aerokobing and Omo) and spending a day in Copenhagen, a city well worth a visit. We even swam!
The weather started to break at this point, mid August, and we had to wait 3 days in Heiligenhafen before crossing back to the British Kiel Yacht Club near the entrance to the Kiel canal where we had hoped to sample their fare but we were the only visitors! Priority on the canal goes to the big ships and we learned that a 60/90 minute wait is quite normal. We retraced our steps through the canal meeting a big cruise ship under one of the bridges to add some fun, and back through a disorientating thunderstorm to Cuxhaven where our second weather window wait lasted four nights!
We eventually escaped at 4 am along with half the marina and motored most of the 60 plus miles to Norderney. It was much quieter now but again the wind blew up and we turned back after trying to leave after making 0.6kts flat out against tide and a sudden hefty wind squall as we entered the narrow exit channel. Wait number three lasted five days before we left again with an accompanying fleet for the 50 mile sail to Lauwersoog in Holland. Watch the buoyage here – it is quite confusing.
We had decided to return via the Dutch canals to escape the westerly winds. This went very well and we made very good progress past Amsterdam and Haarlem until the river police turned us away from one bridge which had decided to break down resulting in us having to make a two day detour via Rotterdam. We finally left Breskens in the rain early one Sunday morning and had a wonderful broad reach sail in glorious sunshine to Dunkerque – champagne sailing! Almost home but not quite as the weather closed in again the next day and we had to wait there for five nights before finally returning to Dover. Nearly five weeks to do what had taken us 12 days in the opposite direction in July!
We rounded off our summer sailing with another three week trip to Greece this October on Canigou, but at this time of year the ferry schedules change and the weather can and does break, so beware.
We have had a fantastic season on our Bavaria 37 Sailing Yacht, a boat on which we felt happy, comfortable and most importantly safe at all times!
But sadly life goes on and we had to make a heartrending and difficult decision: Aegean or northern latitudes? Surprise, surprise the Aegean won, so both our share in the Bavaria 36 in Greece and our Bavaria 37 in Dover have to go to make way for something a sailing boat in Greece. One thing is for certain we love Bavaria sailing yachts...so it will be a Bavaria, great boats, great value and most importantly great sailors!
Contact Suzzanne McDonald on 07940583396 if you would like to view either of these sailing boats.